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LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Discussions of conventional and alternative energy production technologies.

Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Mon 20 Dec 2021, 22:06:05

Doly wrote:
Once efficient and reliable BEV's cost less than an ICE counterpart AND cost much less for fuel, the economics will tell the tale.


I wouldn't assume that EVs will ever cost less than an ICE counterpart. Not saying that it can't happen, but from what I have read, the technical challenges to making cheap EVs are pretty serious.

I've crunched through available numbers a time or two and they come out with the EV being a slim winner today based on lifetime vehicle cost per mile driven.
It of course is a matter of the source and cost of the electricity to charge the EV vs.the cost of gasoline over the life of the car both pretty much unknown today. Also the salvage value of both vehicles at end of service life has to be considered with the battery pack of the EV being perhaps a winning figure.
Of course if you throw in subsidies from factory to solar panel recharge installations etc. the ICE car doesn't stand much chance but that is cost shifting not cost accounting.
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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby phaster » Mon 27 Dec 2021, 18:53:22

theluckycountry wrote:Lithium lol. If we were having trouble with energy back in 1980 it would have been NiMH batteries that were going to save the day. Move along folks, move along...


lithium batteries are needed because at the moment these types of batteries offer the best overall option for vehicle transportation THE problem is the mining lithium uses pretty antiquated methods

actually threw in some "mad money" into a startup that is exploring modern ways of mining lithium that is way more efficient (or at least appears to be),... "time will tell" if my bet pays off

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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby Shaved Monkey » Thu 30 Dec 2021, 19:35:55

Hydrogen seems to be the buzzword around here in Australia
Its apparently going to run us and Japan and Sth Korea and Singapore.
We are aiming to be the biggest exporters in the world using adapted existing LNG infrastructure.
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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby Plantagenet » Thu 30 Dec 2021, 23:48:33

Just like the price of oil goes up and down and affects the economy....the price of lithium goes up and down and can affect things economically.

For instance....the demand for lithium is going up as EVs start to catch on, and the price of lithium is spiking.

lithium-prices-rise-as-supply-fails-to-meet-electric-vehicle-demand

This will feed right back into the price of EVs and make them even more expensive then they already are.

Image
Lithium, lithium batteries, and EVs powered by lithium batteries are all becoming more expensive as the demand for lithium grows.....

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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Fri 31 Dec 2021, 00:36:29

Longer term the usual supply vs. demand dynamics will keep lithium prices under control. There are plenty of deposits out there and once prices rise exploration and development will bring on new supplies which will bring prices back down.
It is not like whale oil where we could literally run out of lithium whales.
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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby Plantagenet » Fri 31 Dec 2021, 01:44:52

vtsnowedin wrote:Longer term the usual supply vs. demand dynamics will keep lithium prices under control. There are plenty of deposits out there and once prices rise exploration and development will bring on new supplies which will bring prices back down......It is not like whale oil where we could literally run out of lithium whales.


No doubt supply and demand will, in theory, operate in the lithium market.

However, back here in the real world we've seen from the oil market that very large fluctuations in the price of commodities can occur for various reasons.

No doubt similar large fluctuations in lithium price are possible.....like the one we're seeing right now where the price of lithium has QUADRUPLED in the last year....from ca. $9000/ton to over $36,000/ton now.

lithium-price-surge-could-charge-demand-lead-batteries-2021-12-16

The price of lithium has gotten so high that some EV manufacturers in China are finding success selling EVs with lead-acid batteries, because EVs with lithium batteries have rocketed up in price as the price of lithium has quadrupled over the last year.

Image
Smaller EVs using lead-acid batteries instead of lithium batteries now have a big price advantage because lithium prices are up 400% in the last year.

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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby theluckycountry » Fri 31 Dec 2021, 08:58:33

Plantagenet wrote:Just like the price of oil goes up and down and affects the economy....the price of lithium goes up and down and can affect things economically.


Nissan dramatically improved the range of its Leaf and sales dramatically declined.
https://www.torquenews.com/1083/these-e ... lt-model-3
Price, plain and simple.
If I was stupid enough to buy an EV it would be something like the Leaf, a car made by an established Japanese car maker, not some startup like tesla who's cars have a terrible reliability and safety record. EV's are basically Segways, soon everyone who wanted to buy one will have one and the rest of us will get on with our lives.
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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby Doly » Sun 02 Jan 2022, 14:23:52

However, back here in the real world we've seen from the oil market that very large fluctuations in the price of commodities can occur for various reasons.


What I don't understand is that, in theory, stuff like futures contracts was supposed to deal with fluctuations in the price of commodities. In reality, commodities fluctuate a lot all the time. Can somebody explain why?
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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Sun 02 Jan 2022, 15:23:39

vtsnowedin wrote: I've crunched through available numbers a time or two and they come out with the EV being a slim winner today based on lifetime vehicle cost per mile driven.
It of course is a matter of the source and cost of the electricity to charge the EV vs.the cost of gasoline over the life of the car both pretty much unknown today. Also the salvage value of both vehicles at end of service life has to be considered with the battery pack of the EV being perhaps a winning figure.
Of course if you throw in subsidies from factory to solar panel recharge installations etc. the ICE car doesn't stand much chance but that is cost shifting not cost accounting.

That all sounds fair.

The real question is whether the CLAIMS that BEV batteries will get much cheaper per kWh is true. Given how engineering tends to lower costs over time, and given the history of the cost per kWh has decreased pretty steadily and significantly for LI ION batteries, I think it has credence UNTIL proven otherwise.

For example:

https://www.greencarreports.com/news/11 ... se-in-2022

https://www.economist.com/graphic-detai ... ee-decades

And of course, other chemistries could help a lot. For example, if 250 or so miles range is acceptable (which is DANDY for people who almost always drive in cities, for example), LFP (lithium iron phosphate) is cheaper, has lots more charge cycles, and has a lower fire risk. So that's an example of how improving battery chemistries should tip the balance over time. Then you have dry vs. wet, better form factors (both improving in the new Tesla 4680 batteries, for example) which will help.

If it weren't for AGW, I'd just say "wait and see, and let the market sort it out". With the clearly accelerating reality of AGW and its consequences, BEV should get the nod. It's already clearly viable and at roughly cost parity, with less CO2 for its lifecycle -- so the only real question is whether it will get better or MUCH better in the coming 2 to 3 decades.
Given the track record of the perma-doomer blogs, I wouldn't bet a fast crash doomer's money on their predictions.
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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby Plantagenet » Sun 02 Jan 2022, 16:35:57

Outcast_Searcher wrote:The real question is whether the CLAIMS that BEV batteries will get much cheaper per kWh is true. Given how engineering tends to lower costs over time, and given the history of the cost per kWh has decreased pretty steadily and significantly for LI ION batteries, I think it has credence UNTIL proven otherwise.


I've already posted a link to price data showing that the price of lithium for LI ION batteries has QUADRUPLED over the last year because the demand is growing much more rapidly then the supply.

Its certainly possible that the CLAIMS that the price for lithium used in EV batteries will go down will be true someday.....but if anyone cares about the facts here the actual evidence from the actual prices from the actual real world shows that the price of lithium is rising very rapidly right now.....in fact its actually gone UP over 400% in a year.

This will inevitably have knock-on effects on the price of EVs, since the lithium battery is the main reason EVs cost so much more then ICE cars. I predict EV prices are going to have to go up in response to the rapidly rising LI prices.

Image
Back here in the real world Li prices have gone up over 400% over the last year....

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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby Pops » Sun 02 Jan 2022, 17:06:42

Doly wrote:
However, back here in the real world we've seen from the oil market that very large fluctuations in the price of commodities can occur for various reasons.


What I don't understand is that, in theory, stuff like futures contracts was supposed to deal with fluctuations in the price of commodities. In reality, commodities fluctuate a lot all the time. Can somebody explain why?

Speculation.

Futures allow producers and bulk consumers (middlemen) to budget in advance. Farmers for example look at futures about now to decide whether to plant corn or beans.

They could borrow from the bank for capital or sell a contract to ADM but the downside with a physical contract is the crop is sold at a price no matter whether the spot market rises or falls before settling time.

With an exchange traded futures bet you can buy or sell the "paper" any time. If the market goes up you sell your contract at a loss but your corn at the market price. And vice versa.

Ditto buying ahead on chemicals, fertility, seed etc. Works the same with oil etc. pre-sell some physical contracts for next year say and be assured of the price but be locked in to that price or buy a derivative futures contract based on the price and date. Futures can be sold any time before the maturity date.

Speculators are just gamblers who don't produce or consume but just bet. They contribute nothing except dumb liquidity I guess. But they amplify small changes in conditions: a cloud in Iowa or a wave in the gulf cause outsize futures changes. But in the end the closing price should be what the market decides based on supply and demand on that day and all the bets are off. Whether speculators, including producer or consumer made or lost a ton off of each other means nothing. I guess that is true, I don't know.
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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby AdamB » Sun 02 Jan 2022, 18:09:51

Doly wrote:What I don't understand is that, in theory, stuff like futures contracts was supposed to deal with fluctuations in the price of commodities. In reality, commodities fluctuate a lot all the time. Can somebody explain why?


Because there are no facts in the future. And the market can't see the future any better than anyone else, it only sees the bets the players involved are making on their exposure to price and time. Like Vegas, except without known odds on any of the games.

Here is an example, I took the daily natural gas futures prices going back to 2008, and compared them to a set period of time 5 years later in 2013. To see how close the future forward strip had to be before it got anywhere close to the actual price on a given day. The market didn't know squat until it was maybe 6 months out, and that seemed to be only because you were operating within a half cycle, winter to summer, summer to winter, shoulder season to shoulder season. The other problem is you have to get the number of players involved from a year or more out, because not many players operate that far out, at least in the US, and natural gas, a decade or more back. So theoretically a single player could be setting that price, and that is a lousy sample size for making any assumption on the markets accuracy at predicting the future at large, rather than just what they single player is doing.
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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby Plantagenet » Sun 02 Jan 2022, 19:32:13

Pops wrote:
Doly wrote:What I don't understand is that, in theory, stuff like futures contracts was supposed to deal with fluctuations in the price of commodities. In reality, commodities fluctuate a lot all the time. Can somebody explain why?


Sure.

First of all, future contracts were never intended to "deal with" or somehow end fluctuations in the price of commodities.

Quite the opposite.

Futures contracts are designed to be a HEDGE against future fluctuations.

Fluctuations are inevitably going to happen because of supply and demand issues, unforeseen storms, labor issues, wars, idiotic decisions by the president, etc. unless you're in a prolonged period of time where supply vastly exceeds demand.

So.....if prices are going to fluctuate....how do you protect yourself from future price boosts? You buy a future contract for that commodity. You might have to pay more than the current price to get the future contract, but you will be protected if the price really explodes down the line.

Image
Fluctuations in commodity prices are inevitably going to happen because of supply and demand issues, unforeseen storms, labor issues, wars, idiotic decisions by the president that cause inflation and supply chain disruptions, etc. etc.

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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby Doly » Sun 09 Jan 2022, 17:50:15

Futures contracts are designed to be a HEDGE against future fluctuations.

Fluctuations are inevitably going to happen because of supply and demand issues, unforeseen storms, labor issues, wars, idiotic decisions by the president, etc. unless you're in a prolonged period of time where supply vastly exceeds demand.


Let me reformulate the question a bit better: Commodity prices seem to fluctuate a lot for purely financial reasons, not just the sort of obvious things that you'd expect commodities to fluctuate with. Why? If people have hedges against the fluctuations, it seems to me that it shouldn't happen.
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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby Plantagenet » Mon 10 Jan 2022, 01:57:05

Doly wrote:Let me reformulate the question a bit better: Commodity prices seem to fluctuate a lot for purely financial reasons, not just the sort of obvious things that you'd expect commodities to fluctuate with. Why? If people have hedges against the fluctuations, it seems to me that it shouldn't happen.


I"m not sure what you mean by "purely financial reasons." Prices are, by their very nature, financial matters, but the driving force in prices is supply and demand. Could you give an example of a price change that you've seen that was due to "purely financial reasons" and had nothing to do with supply and demand?

Of course fluctuations in commodity prices are going to happen. Things keep happening that markets can't foresee. Thats why there is a futures market for many commodities. Hedges can't stop price fluctuations.....Hedges (or the purchase of commodity futures) is done to guarantee a set price for the commodity in the future, no matter happens in the real-time market.

The price fluctuations that I see all reflect concerns about future prices of things, or actual changes in price due to supply interruptions or other supply/demand imbalances.

For instance.......every time there is a war or even a terror attack somewhere near the middle east there is chance oil supplies might be interrupted. This tends to drive oil prices up because the price of oil futures goes up due to the increased risk. Then, if there is an actual war, the price of oil goes up even further if there is a supply interruption, and the people who bought the futures make a lot of money when the price of oil goes up even more because they've locked in a lower price for oil. But if there isn't a war, then the people who bought the higher priced futures might lose money, because the price of oil might fall below the price they paid for their oil future contract..

Or take the current quadrupling of the price of lithium. People all around the world are starting new EV companies and selling many more EVs. This means the demand for lithium is going....hence the price of lithium has skyrocketed. If someone had bought lithium futures a year ago they might've locked in a price just 1/4 of the current market price.

Image
Its all based on supply and demand, and on predictions of future supply and demand....and its all behaving exactly as one would expect it to, IMHO.
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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby theluckycountry » Mon 10 Jan 2022, 07:25:55

vtsnowedin wrote:While the little quarter sized lithium batteries in your watch or phone don't get recycled much at present by the time your 75KW battery in your Tesla needs replacement it will surly get recycled and it will probably be against the law not to.


Crystal ball time is it, well the reality is the cost. It costs too much. Look at solar panels, where are they getting recycled on any scale? They have been talking about that for decades too.

No oil or coal, everything powered by renewables, all the ore dug and transported by lithium powered vehicles, and all the world's fleets besides, and now add to that impossible burden recycling all the lipo batteries and solar panels on top of building all the new ones.

This EV transition via lipo is just fodder for the dumbed down masses, no one here should take it seriously. We already see the solution to oil depletion playing out before our eyes, if we choose to open them and look around! See for yourself https://www.eia.gov/petroleum/weekly/crude.php half way down the page: Crude oil production and imports (million barrels per day)
That's the effects of the magic virus.

The all time high for US consumption was 20,531.482 Barrel/Day in 2005. That was before the US mortgage bubble blew up. It's been all downhill since then. Yes some years approached this figure but where was the extra oil going? Consumed by the rabid frac oil plays is part of the story. Burning oil to get oil on a vast scale. But no one ever talks about this waste of resources.

2018:
SRSrocco: The Unbelievable Amount Of Frac Sand Consumed By The U.S. Shale Oil Industry

“If we calculate the number of truckloads used to transport this sand to the Permian shale oil wells, it’s truly a staggering figure.” Here’s the details…

by Steve St Angelo of SRSrocco Report

The U.S. Shale Oil Industry utilizes a stunning amount of equipment and consumes a massive amount of materials to produce more than half of the country’s oil production. One of the vital materials used in the production of shale oil is frac sand. The amount of frac sand used in the shale oil business has skyrocketed by more than 10 times since the industry took off in 2007.

According to the data by Rockproducts.com and IHS Markit, frac sand consumption by the U.S. shale oil and gas industry increased from 10 billion pounds a year in 2007 to over 120 billion pounds in 2017. This year, frac sand consumption is forecasted to climb to over 135 billion pounds, with the country’s largest shale field, the Permian, accounting for 37% of the total at 50 billion pounds...
...However, by the end of 2018, over 1.1 million truckloads of frac sand will be used to produce the Permian’s shale oil and gas


And that's just the sand used.

https://www.silverdoctors.com/headlines ... -industry/
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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby theluckycountry » Mon 10 Jan 2022, 07:36:04

Plantagenet wrote:
Or take the current quadrupling of the price of lithium. People all around the world are starting new EV companies and selling many more EVs. This means the demand for lithium is going....hence the price of lithium has skyrocketed. If someone had bought lithium futures a year ago they might've locked in a price just 1/4 of the current market price.


What effect is this having on the price of EV's Plant? I assume they can absorb the shock only so long.
EV's are the new LPG powered vehicles, they looked sort of economical in the beginning but then became a loser choice. I have a mate with a 4x4 that has both gas and petrol, he still uses the LPG but it's a pain in the @ss to find a servo that sells it now. And the cost is getting to the break-even point when you factor in the lower mileage it gives.
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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby theluckycountry » Mon 10 Jan 2022, 07:47:28

Pops wrote:What I don't understand is that, in theory, stuff like futures contracts was supposed to deal with fluctuations in the price of commodities.


Go and follow some and see for yourself. I watched the Silver futures on the Comex for several months, when the contracts came due the price of silver nearly always took a plunge making the paper worth less and so the buyer would settle out for cash instead of demanding the physical. All markets seem rigged now, these futures ones for sure.
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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby Pops » Mon 10 Jan 2022, 09:19:58

Doly wrote:Let me reformulate the question a bit better: Commodity prices seem to fluctuate a lot for purely financial reasons, not just the sort of obvious things that you'd expect commodities to fluctuate with. Why? If people have hedges against the fluctuations, it seems to me that it shouldn't happen.

Speculation.

How does it go?
Buy the Rumor, Sell the News.

Speculators are gamboling, they magnify every event thinking they have the inside track: hailstorm in Iowa, gulf oil rig toilet clog, because they think they are bamboozling some other"retail investor" locked-down on his couch playing with stimulus money.

In the end though, the market—supply vs demand sets the actual price. I read somewhere way back that speculation does add some small percentage to the final price, I can't remember the amount but fairly insignificant.
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Re: LITHIUM IS THE NEW OIL

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Mon 10 Jan 2022, 13:33:15

The price of the commodity delivered is of course set by the usual supply vs. demand dynamics. However the price of the companies stock of the producer companies does have a factor based on speculators betting that supplies will be tighter raising prices and profits in the near future. that is currently about 30 percent of the stock price of all the Lithium stocks today, but today with the death of the BBB bill they are down about 6 percent which is twice what the rest of the market has declined today.
The subsidies for EV and charging stations in the BBB bill are not going to happen at least for now, but the states like California having bills forbidding new ICE cars in the near future will get that demand in place eventually so I see this pull back in the Lithium stocks as a temporary setback.
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